The Vocalist Magazine SPRING 2013 ISSUE - Page 70

This can be one of the most powerful tools you can ever invest in. Even if someone hears your CD and loves it, there’s no guarantee that your live performance is great. Here is an example from a series of videos that cost me about $2,000 to produce start to finish. I built them to sell an emerging artist for opening slots on major tours and to get booked at music festivals in the Canadian market. It has been about 14 months since these videos where produced and the artist has secured many high profile performance slots (including opening for rock band Heart on a 30-day tour) which has paid for the cost of this video over and over. I also made an additional series that represented what the artist does live with her full band: This can be done at a cheaper rate if you have friends that can help or the time and skills to deal with some of the production yourself. The production value does not necessarily have to be this high to achieve similar goals, though if you can afford to spend on quality it doesn’t hurt. In both of these videos I opted for a controlled environment instead of doing this at a live show because I wanted the ability to do each song a few times and ensure the best camera angles. I also had limited time to work with due to the artists touring schedule. An actual live show in a cool venue with an audience that’s really digging it is even more effective but also creates several variables that are less controllable. I have had bad experiences with other acts where we are doing a live show and then during the song that I really wanted to capture the guitar crapped out and then it kind of fell apart. (I suggest if you are going for the actual live show recording route to plan to record 2 or more evenings to ensure you get what you need.) Credit Image - 5. Live Audio/Video Samples Marcato Musician CEO Darren Gallop dress like you are going to your buddy’s house to drink beer and watch football. Live shots can be great too — I recommend a bit of both. 7. Have a Solid Social Media Presence Social media presence is key in building your music career this day and age, and helps when trying to get booked at music festivals. Many indie labels, major labels, promoters and agents go straight to your online presence. It shows them how serious you are about your success and what your fan base is like. 8. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Your product is your band’s live performance and your customers are music festivals. Basically, you are looking for a software system (it can be web-based or desktop), or if you are old school some form of Rolodex or agenda/contact book combination. You can even use the tools you have on your Mac or PC like iCal or Outlook to create reminders and your address book to keep notes of your communication with people. You want something to keep track of every festival you want to play, the people that you encounter that work at the festival, your conversations with these people and follow-up plans. 5 and 1/2. Be an Opportunist When we landed the opening tour with Heart, I hired someone to come in with an HD video recorder at a show in a major venue and set up my ProTools Mbox with a feed from the board and a stereo mic pattern in the room. This cost me $300 and has become another great sales and marketing tool: Bottom line, having some great live content can drastically eliminate risk from the festival’s perspective and makes it easier to get booked at music festivals. Now Put These Tips to Work! Darren Gallop is CEO of artist and festival management software company Marcato Digital Solutions. He can be reached at 6. Look Good in Pictures A few hundred dollars for some professional photography will go a long way to portray a professional image. Unprofessional artists rarely get booked at music festivals! Try to come up with a theme or an idea. Pick a cool location, look the part you’re playing, and look like you are all on the same team. Don’t